Amy Byer's Sweet Potato Cake with a Coconut Filling and Caramel Frosting is a decadent addition to any Thanksgiving Day menu.
Her family dessert recipe is made with sweet potatoes, sour cream, eggs, butter, sugar, spices, and pecans. A Coconut Filling is spread evenly between the thick layers of cake and a caramel frosting is evenly spread on top and on the sides with a spatula.
Layered Almond-Cream Cheese Bread Pudding with Amaretto Cream Sauce is another family recipe she likes to share.
“It has layers,” she said. “You take the bread and then you put the cream cheese filling and then you put more bread and then there is an almond filling you put on top and then you bake it and then put the Amaretto Cream Sauce on top. It's really good.”
“These two (recipes) are quite involved,” said Byers, chair of the Culinary Arts program at Spartanburg Community College. Byers received her culinary degree from Johnson & Wales University in 1990.
While slicing into her desserts, she also shared Thanksgiving dessert recipes from friends which included a Pumpkin Crisp and a Cranberry-Apple Crunch.
“The Pumpkin Crisp is something really easy to do and something people could do at home,” she said. “It's kind of like what's called a dump cake. You just put the canned pumpkin or you can use roasted pumpkins and you pour those ingredients on top and bake it and it's really easy. It's like a pumpkin pie without the pie crust.”
“This one tastes really good,” she said of the Cranberry-Apple Crunch. “People make apple crisp all the time but to add the cranberry…. You just mix all this stuff up and then make a crumb topping and spread it on top and bake it.
“These two are real easy,” she said of the Pumpkin Crisp and the Cranberry-Apple Crunch. “These are a good family friendly recipe.”
“These two are quite involved,” she said of the Sweet Potato Cake and Almond-Cream Cheese Bread Pudding.
Byers offered a few tips for baking for the holidays. “I think you should get your desserts out of the way,” she said. “Even if it's something you can bake that morning. Usually, desserts will hold a day. Desserts are stuff you should make early on.”
Byers said it's probably best not to try a new recipe for Thanksgiving without practicing it a couple of times.
“Once a dessert messes up, there's not a lot you can do,” she said. “Desserts are scientific. You have to be specific and patient. You have to follow the formulas and recipes.”
By the way, homemade apple pie is her favorite Thanksgiving Day dessert.
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 (18.5 ounces) package butter-flavored cake mix
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup butter, melted
Stir together first five ingredients.
Pour into lightly greased 13x9-inch baking dish.
Sprinkle cake mix evenly over pumpkin mixture.
Sprinkle evenly with pecans.
Drizzle butter over pecans.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour or until golden brown.
Serve with whipped cream and sprinkled nutmeg
View this article and view more of Amy's recipes on GoUpstate.com